Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Years Eve

The end of 2014 is nearly here.  It saw the passing of DH's brother after a long illness, and other sad times as well.  Hoping that 2015 is an improvement, and  that all the surprises are good ones.

I wish all the visitors here would comment at least part of the time.  It would be nice to see what posts they liked, or what brought them to this site.  I know there are counters that tell who, where, how long, origin and destination, but I don't want to pay for a service like that for a 'hobby' blog.  I am not trying to set a record or post advertisements, but I am curious.  I don't follow many blogs, not like I did when blogging was new, but most bloggers have dropped off the 'net by now, although I think some just changed to Facebook.  I always seem to start something just as it is falling out of popularity!  This blog is 10 years old, who would have guessed that I would be able to write about almost nothing for 550+posts?

Bumper sticker for the day:  "I lost my mind and I'm pretty sure the kids took it."

Monday, December 29, 2014

Nearly the end of the year

I have been resting up these last couple of days, the knitted crib blanket is almost done (crochet edges).  I will take photo to post here when it is done.  There is an area to duplicate stitch a name/ date, etc. which will have to wait until I know who will receive it.  Meanwhile I am contemplating what project to do next that will use the yarn I got for Christmas.  It is cream colored and extra bulky, but there isn't enough to make a sweater.  Maybe a vest.  I'll think it over.

The weather here has been really strange, warm and rainy.  It feels like fall and not winter.  Not that I am complaining, I hasten to add.  We just feel like we are waiting for the other shoe to drop.  The forecasts have been all over the board so far, and none of them remotely accurate.  Clearly we didn't get a predicted white Christmas, which would have been nice.  Today and yesterday it was rainy, with a blue sky, so weird.

I still haven't made up my mind about what to get with my Amazon gift card.  I have a wish list, but I am changing my mind repeatably about what to get.  I don't think I have ever had a gift card before; so this is a novel thing to do.  I feel like I am going through a Sears Roebuck catalog - remember those? - where everything in the shining sun is offered.  I miss those catalogs, the ones I get in the mail are pale by comparison.  If they were honest they would state "made in China" on the front cover. And several  catalogs duplicate merchandise offered elsewhere using the same photos and price, making me think they are actually the same company under different names.

We still have candy, cookies and dried fruit left over from Christmas, I weighed myself this morning and it is exactly the same as before the holidays, which is good.  The weight loss will continue after New Years, sigh.

That's it for today, hope all of you had a great holiday and saw lots of friends and family.  It is a little melancholy for us, so many of the family, and friends too, have passed, taking a little bit of us with each one.  Now we are the 'older' generation, who used to be the one with babies.  My 'babies' are in their 30s now.  I am still waiting for grandkids.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Cover me:  I'm changing lanes."

Friday, December 26, 2014

Dec. 26 th

Well we're all still er, well, bloated from Christmas food and not up to tasting any gifted candy, dried fruit, cookies, not even the enticing veggie tray with dip, not for a while.  But my new sheepskin slippers feel great, yarn (scads of it) to knit with, pottery mug (daughter and I swapped bowls), DVDs of Maleficent, Frozen and best of all, Vin Diesel in Riddick, all of these will keep me busy for a while.

We kept the neighbors' gold lab puppy for Christmas day, while they went to their parent's house for the day.  They had it fixed with the other neighbor, but they changed their minds on the day of.  We were glad to keep him, he was warm and cuddly and interested in getting everything in his mouth.  He settled down after about an hour, and never made a mess in his crate, and went as soon as we took him to the yard.  The garage cats (where the crate was) were not amused, but allowed as how he couldn't get to them, and they do have the kitty door to exit if necessary.  But listening to him HOWL aroooo for a solid hour reinforced my dictum, NO more pets of any kind.  If only they came with a volume control.

I've been wandering around Amazon to see what I could get with my gift card, decisions, decisions.  I'll post it here when I decide.  Maybe a fountain pen.  I collect Parker Vacumatic pens of a certain style, but the price of them have gotten totally absurd.  So I just get mine out, fill them with ink and write for a while.  Did you know, pens are one of the very few collectables still used for their original purpose?  And my entire collection could fit in a shoe box if necessary.

I guess I'm glad porcelain chamber pots aren't used for their original purpose.  I saw on Antiques Road show a silver ewer, bowl, etc,. and a silver chamber pot.  The owner had used it for a punch bowl several times...

 Bumper sticker for the day:  "Be sincere whether you mean it or not."

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Christmas Day, 2014

The day has finally arrived and we had a marvelous time opening gifts, eating yummy treats, playing with our new stuff, and (for me) napping.
I know few readers will chance by here today, so I will go directly to today's card:

And here is my very best thought for such a wonderful day:

Three Wise Women would have asked for directions, arrived on time, helped deliver the baby, cleaned the stables, made a casserole, brought practical gifts... and there would be Peace on Earth!

Wishing all of you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy new Year !

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Dec. 24th

I am beat.  I have spent the day so far doing laundry, tidying up, getting the living room, dining room and bedroom put back together and the Christmas stuff sorted and packed up (wrapping stuff mostly).  Once the holiday is over and the tree is down, we will (shudder) go into the attic to store it all.  In the attic is stink bug heaven, and the nasty things give me the major creeps.  One landed on me yesterday and I screamed. UGH!!  They are an import from (where else?) China and the infestation began in Philadelphia, and is spreading like wildfire.  All you people in the south, count your blessings (for now) that they are not there.  Yet. They prefer warm weather.

I've got Christmas music playing softly in the living room, trying to get into the mood.  I don't think we will be having a white Christmas, it is too warm and rain showers are what is predicted for tomorrow.  Still, it is nice to have everyone home and sharing a good time together.  I hope all my gifts please the recipient, I really racked my brain to come up with ideas for them. 

The card for the day: 
inside is:  "May beautiful moments and happy memories surround you with joy this Holiday Season"

And the thought for the day:  "I deserve a bonus for making it through the week without stabbing someone with a fork."

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Dec. 23rd

Ah, it feels good to sit down for a while!  The farrier came this morning to trim the horses' feet, and they were both all fidgety and wouldn't stand without lipping, chewing on the rope, and licking my coat (ewww).  But it is done, good for 8 more weeks.  I am showered and non-horsey smelling too.  Once I am done here, I will wrap the last three gifts, the ones I thought were already done.  Next year (oh, right) I will get a big plastic tub and put everything in it as they accumulate, and not have to root in the closets, boxes and shelves to find everything.  Then afterwards I can store yarn in it!

DH is off to the store to pick up the few things we overlooked when we bought all the stuff for Christmas dinner.  That should set us for the rest of the year (doesn't that sound great?) as far as groceries, other than the odd gallon of milk.  The only thing that would improve things would be if the grocery store would deliver.  There was a small store in town that used to do that, a great boon for the more elderly residents, but of course they went out of business.  Out here we can't even get pizza delivered. 

Here is today's Christmas card:
Inside:  Sending you good wishes for the Holiday Season and the coming year

And the thought for the day:  "A real friend is one who overlooks your broken down gate, and admires the flowers in your garden"

Monday, December 22, 2014

Dec. 22

Here I was, merrily typing away, when the screen went blank and my entire post evaporated.  Even the "save" and "revert to draft" failed to bring it back.  Grrrr.

Thus this post is quite short, because if it happens again I will flip out.

Today's Christmas card:

Inside reads:  "Wishing you every happiness this holiday season and throughout the coming year."

Bumper sticker:  "I can't clean because I get distracted by all the cool stuff I find."

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Dec. 21st

Inside:  "Warmest thoughts and best wishes for a wonderful holiday and a very happy new year."

Hope everyone here is feeling the holiday spirit and looking forward to the big day.  I have completed everything that needs to be done, except for the food, which we will get soon.  It feels really nice, to look at the gifts under the tree and know there is nothing left to prepare.  I love to give gifts!

Thought for the day:  "The meaning of life is to find your gift.  The purpose of life is to give it away."  _Joy Golliver

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Dec. 20th

Whew!  The entire house smells like cinnamon spice, thanks to a candle downstairs.  It is a little strong, but not a bad scent.

I'm going to go to our Gabe's, a discount store that belongs to TJ Maxx.  I have a $5 coupon that is burning a hole in my pocket, and whatever I get will NOT be for a Christmas present.  Just to shop around, check out bargains, etc.  I am betting there will be crowds there, we will see.  They have revamped the store after its purchase by TJ Maxx, and one of the things they did was make the checkout area into a single line, and then each person goes to the next available checker, like the banks have always done.  It is much more efficient, and I love not getting stuck behind someone with dozens of items and waiting for a price check.  Completely ruins the shopping experience, I think.

We got our first (and maybe only) Christmas card, from my sister in law.  The card was one from Natl. Wildlife Federation and the reason I know that is that I have the same cards.  I nearly sent the same one to her, but in the end I sent one of the ones (see Dec. 14th) that has Santa, since she has a 3 year old great-grandson she is raising.  He is a handful, I think, and I bet there is much Christmas mayhem at her house on the big day.

We are predicted to have a white Christmas this year, for the first time in a lot of years.  It does make the Christmas lights look particularly festive.  For us, who stay home, the travel is not a consideration, we can just enjoy it without worrying about the roads.

Here is today's card:

Inside it says:  "Wishing you happiness for Christmas and all the year."

And today's bumper sticker:  "It's OK if you disagree with me.  I can't force you to be right."

Friday, December 19, 2014

Dec. 19th

I got the Christmas cards mailed out (all 5 of them), after I wrote notes in all of them.  Then I wrapped all of DD and DS gifts, leaving only the ones for DH to still be wrapped.  I had a second thought about one of the gifts I was giving my husband, and re-directed it to our son.  So husband is going to come up one gift short, which he said is fine with him.

We had dinner out today, and it was disappointing.  We went to Applebees, and it was crammed.  We got seated quickly, and then waited and waited for the server, and then for the food.  I saw two diners send their food back.  I had fried shrimp; there isn't a lot you can do to ruin fried shrimp.  The cole slaw was dry and tasteless, and the french fries were cold.  We didn't linger, with all the people waiting for a table.  We won't be going back to Applebees for a while.

We went to the mall afterwards, my one and only trip this season.  The parking lot was crammed, but there weren't that many in the stores, a puzzle.  We also went to WallyWorld (Walmart) and it was crammed, but at least for a change there were enough checkout lines.  We needed milk and ribbons, nice to get them at the same place.  I noticed there were a lot of dead people singing Christmas carols, broadcast over the speakers, ding dong ding dong, Christmas bells are ringing.  At least they let the Sally Army guy sit inside to ring his bell for kettle donations.  It was 30 outside.  Here is today's Christmas card: 
Inside it says "Warmest greetings and good wishes at Christmastime"
Doesn't that look cozy? 

And today's bumper sticker:  "I'm not always sarcastic.  Sometimes I'm asleep."

And asleep is where I am headed for now...

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Dec. 18th

Inside it says:  "May your holidays be merry and bright!"

I have noticed that many of the most recent visitors to this site are from Moscow (or maybe one visitor coming multiple times) and I wonder if it is a custom there as well, to send holiday cards.  If not, then this must be a strange bunch of posts to them.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "What I lack in sleep I make up for in blank stares."

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Dec. 17

We got a lot done today.  Foremost, we got the lawn tractor to the shop for repairs, and brought the power wagon home after its repair.  The power wagon is vital for cleaning the barn, the alternative is to use a wheelbarrow, and that is a real chore.  The horses have been in the barn for most of the last 2 weeks, because the footing in the turn-out area has been so muddy and slick; the last thing I need is one of these geriatric horses to be injured.  But that means the stalls have to be picked out every day or two, and again we need the power wagon.

Horses are a lot of work.

We also did trips to the pharmacy, and to the grocery store.  I was determined to work on the knitting project and at least get it closer to finished, but with the other errands it didn't happen.  Thursday for sure.  I will post a photo when the crib blanket is finished, I am very pleased with it.  I have read that parents these days don't use blankets in the crib; instead they put the baby in a "cocoon" to sleep, a sort of sack gathered on the foot end.  I guess the change is to keep the infant from getting tangled up in a blanket, but that seems a little far-fetched to me.  Oh well, if the blanket isn't used in the crib, it can go on the floor when the baby is in the exploring stage, to keep it cleaner than crawling on the floor.

Here is a picture of a cocoon:

OK, so here is today's Christmas card:

Inside it says:  "To wish you a joyous Christmas and happiness throughout the coming year."

And today's bumper sticker:  "Easily distracted by shiny objects."

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Dec. 16th

Today was a dull visit to the doctor to go over my meds.  Afterwards I felt like I did when school was out, happy!! Yeah!!

Here is the card for today:

Inside it says :  "Thinking of you in this season of joy and wishing you every happiness in the coming new year."

Today's bumper sticker:  "Temporarily out of my mind.  Please leave a message."

Monday, December 15, 2014

Monday Monday

Today's efforts were knee-directed so that I can actually move around for the holidays.  At least the treatment seems to have worked, as far as I can tell.  The only drawback, and it isn't much of one, is that I had to get up at 6:15 am to be on time.  I don't know what it is about surgeons, they want to see all their patients, like on hospital rounds, before 8 am.  To clear the rest of the day for what?  Golf?  It's a puzzle.

Here is today's card:

Inside it says :  "Wishing you a Joyous Holiday and a New Year filled with Peace and Happiness"

And today's thought for the day:  "I go the extra mile.  (Usually because I'm lost.)

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Sunday the 14th

THE date is drawing closer, and I haven't gotten anything wrapped yet.  Even more than that task, I haven't gotten the crib blanket finished.  It needs to be pressed/steamed and then crocheted around the outside to help it lie flat.  This is a more worrisome job, since I don't know how to crochet.  But there is always YouTube for a close-up on how to do this.

The weather here has been gloomy today, and I have slept half the day away.  Even then I wanted to sleep more, but eventually I sleep around the clock to wake up at bedtime and get sleepy in the morning, no good.  There isn't anything on TV but football games, as far as I can tell, and there is just so much football I can take at one go.  The Steelers won against the Falcons, after that it is all a blur.  Go team.

Here is today's card:

Inside it reads:  "Hope your Christmas is full of nice surprises!"

Ah coookies, yum.  We went shopping yesterday for groceries and I bought treats that I only get at Christmas time, like pinwheel cookies, and pizzelles, and mixed nuts.  And let's not forget about the cheesecake.  I think my weight loss will continue, but after the holidays.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "I put the PRO in procrastinate."

Saturday, December 13, 2014


Today is that never-to-be-repeated date sequence, 12-13-14.  Somehow I am less than thrilled, but still, interesting.

Today's card:
Inside it says:  "A friendly hello to wish you a happy holiday season!"

Have you noticed, all the greetings (most, anyway) end with an exclamation point !!
It's a little annoying!

Thought for the day:  "Logic- the art of being wrong with confidence."

Friday, December 12, 2014

Dec. 12th

I almost missed getting this one posted today, as it is 10 minutes until midnight here.  But never fear, this intrepid blogger will post, no matter the time, the weather (it is cold and clear here), the sleepiness (yawn) or any other impedimenta.  Unless I find something else to do.

Today's card:

Inside:  "May your every holiday wish come true"

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Families are like fudge, mostly sweet with a few nuts."

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Dec. 11th

Here is the card for today.  Today's big excitement was going to the grocery store, where among other things I bought fruit cake.  I don't know why it has such a bad reputation, it tastes fine to me, and every year I have to search to find some (other than Claxton).  My dad was the one who hated Claxton fruitcake.  Many many years ago we were on our way to WV when Dad got caught in a speed trap (For those who don't know, a speed trap is when the local police get set to catch anyone going 1 mph or more over the limit in some little road that locals didn't use.)  They charged him an inordinate amount of "bail" so we could continue our trip.  We barely had enough cash for gas to make it to WV (no credit cards in those days) and then Mom had to borrow $ from Grandad to get home.  All of this occurred in Claxton Georgia and Dad never forgot.  Thus, no Claxton fruit cake!

Inside it says "Thinking of you at Christmas and always."

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Stop kicking yourself.  Let me do that."

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Dec. 10

I can't believe Christmas is  just two (+1 day) weeks away.  Everything I ordered has arrived, and the things that were wrong have been returned.  The tree is up and (rather half-heartedly) decorated.  Just the wrapping and the food needs to be done.  The food is no problem, after the big production of Thanksgiving, the meal for Christmas is steak and baked potato. No leftovers, no hours spent in the kitchen trying to get everything ready at the same time.  This gives us time to play with our gifts, too.  In my case, it will be (hopefully) yarn.  The crib blanket will be done (I hope, it nearly is now) and ready to send once the baby is born (so I can be certain of the name).  I do wish I would get an email or two from friends, but they will eventually send one.  Meanwhile, I will keep busy with these cards :

Inside it says:  "Happy Holidays!"

This is what I call an inoffensive card, because the tree and the gifts are the only Christmas signs, and happy holiday could mean Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, etc., or nothing at all religious.  And the cute dog, who can resist?

Bumper sticker for the day:  "The older I get the better I was."

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Dec. 9th

I found my stash of Christmas cards from early years, so I have more to choose from for here.  Today's card

Inside it reads:  "May Christmas joys warm all your days in jolly, merry, happy ways!"

And today's thought:  "It's OK.  I've brought the duct tape."

Monday, December 08, 2014

Dec. 8th

Hello S and happy birthday!  I will try to call again later today.

Today's Christmas card:

Inside it says " Wishing you holiday happiness and cheer Wishing you good and happy things all through the coming year!"

I'm getting these cards mixed up, so if I post one two times, just chalk it up to old age...

Four more gifts arrived in today's UPS delivery, I am almost done, cross my fingers.  If something doesn't come, I'll just cut out a picture of it and wrap that (kind of an IOU).

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Sometimes I amaze myself and other times I can't remember what day it is."

Sunday, December 07, 2014

Christmas in Gassaway

Well, a trip down to Gassaway to visit family.  I never mind being there but getting there is a royal pain.  It is about 60 miles from here, all interstate, so it should not bug me that way.  But the beautiful hills of WV tend to be less lovely when you are constantly searching out the deer on both sides.  Hitting one at 70 MPH is no picnic, and has been the cause of many accidents.  The entire state has been trying innovative methods of controlling them.  Hunting within the city limits (with a bow) is now possible but has had little overall effect.  Making deer season longer has not had much impact.  In fact, hunters in the woods push the deer out of their usual areas and into places where they risk being hit by cars.

However, trips to and from were accomplished with no encounters.  Knock on wood.

We put poinsettias on the graves this time, but the lilacs we removed still look fine and can be used again in the spring.  All of the graves look nice, mowed and spruced up, and many were decorated.  We do the same for the four graves (mom, dad, sister of mom, daughter of mom and dad).  and my uncle takes care of his and his wife's relatives up above.  What will happen once my aunt and uncle pass I don't know.  We mainly do it to save them $$ for decorating so many graves.  I've never had the feeling that there is anyone there.

My Christmas shopping is done, all without leaving the house.  I did get some duds, but back they went for (mostly) a full refund.  Still have 5 things to come, which I hope for this week.  I don't do well in crowds, so this let me be here, with endless choices to be made.  It is amazing the unusual things one can find online.  There is nothing too exotic, no one has any real needs, as we all buy pretty much what we want when we want it.  But I had some ideas.

We have the Christmas tree up and decorated, it looks pretty nice.  No icicles, because the cats (blech) eat them.  We still have the outside lights to put up, but the weather is being uncooperative and we have had rain for days, and still more rain to come.  DS got the barn cleaned, but it was a chore with the Power'wagon refusing to start, and forcing him to use a wheelbarrow. The wagon needs to go to the shop pronto.  The wheelbarrow method is fairly OK for one stall, but there are three.

Time for today's Christmas card:

The inside says:  "Warmest greetings and good wishes for the holiday season."

And todays bumper sticker:  "I love to give homemade gifts... which one of my kids would you like?"

Saturday, December 06, 2014

Merry Christmas (again)

This is the card I send to my "doggone" friends, and the vet.  It looks just like Raven, one of my two Newfoundlands.  Such a sweety.

Thought for the day:  "An apple will keep anyone away if thrown hard enough."

Friday, December 05, 2014

Today's card

Inside it says : "Warm holiday greetings and wishes for a New Year that's full of joy!"

I'm still getting gifts shipped in to complete my list.  Then will come the dreaded task of wrapping.  There have been years when I was wrapping in the small hours of Christmas day, I put it off so long.  I'm tempted to get one of those big plastic bags with decorations and just load them full of the unwrapped presents...

Bumper sticker for the day:  "If Dorothy can click her heels and be back in Kansas, why can't I click my flipflops and be at the beach?"

Thursday, December 04, 2014

Christmas Cards

Hardly anyone sends Christmas cards these days.  In fact, you are lucky if you get an email card.  Partly because we have all  gotten out of the habit of writing anything by hand.  But that alone isn't enough to understand this change, because I have noticed the trend for years, long before PCs became commonplace.  Yes, I am that old.  And it is funny, at the stores that sell cards, if you shop for a new box, they have been picked over pretty thoroughly for something that few people need.  Anyway, I will send off my usual 5 or 6,and maybe get 3 or 4 in return.  But all of them will be from people I love, and who love me back.  Richer than gold.

So since I have all these cards accumulated over the years, I am going to "give" (post) one for my loyal readers each day until Christmas.  I kinda like the idea.
The inside reads:  "May the gifts of the season fill your heart with joy."

And now the thought for the day:  "Life is all about how you handle plan B."

Saturday, November 29, 2014

BAH humbug

I am not doing well in the Christmas spirit realm so far.  All the Christmas promotion starting in Oct. have made me feel like I am way behind, instead of just a a little behind. (old joke: the butcher who backed into his meat grinder got a little behind in his work.) Anyway, I have gotten some gifts on line and some have already come, so I am not doing too badly.  If I could only think of what else I can get, shopping for it is then easy.  No one will tell me what they want, so they will get pot luck, which is not a bad thing really.

We have snow here, but not for long as it is well above freezing now and for tomorrow as well.  The snow blower is all primed to go on our new driveway, that will be a huge change.  Last year I had to put on snow boots just to get to the car; and then they were unnecessary once we got into town.  Such a nuisance.  The horses' blankets are ready for wearing, once the temps are consistently cold so they don't overheat.  The horses overheat, that is, not the blankets.  We are feeding Willie double rations because he has a little too much rib showing right now.  He is a cribber, and it is hard to keep one in good flesh, they mess up their digestive system with all that air they swallow.  If you don't have horses, just skip the above, it is too complicated to explain here.  Or I am too lazy, take your pick.

The new med that the doctor gave me for my knee pain seems to be working pretty well, combined with tylenol.  I hope that it continues to be bearable for the foreseeable future and that knee replacement surgery is not needed for a good long while.  I am due for another cortisone shot in a week or so, that will help a lot too.  I am SLLLowly losing weight, I rejoined Weight Watchers online, and that is a help.  Still it will be needed for at least a year, how did I get so heavy?  I know, I know -- eating.  There is so much yummy food out there, you can turn down 95% of what is on offer and still gain weight on the remaining 5%.  Just ask me.

This is turning into a jumble of topics, none of them especially interesting, so I'll give up for now.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "For the price of a one-year gym membership I can replace my entire wardrobe with larger clothes."

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Knitting machines

I have to admit, I am hooked on knitting machines.  I have three so far, all manual ones, and would eventually like to get an electronic one.  If these things are new

to you, here are two of mine.  The top one is very basic, just a bed of needles, each pass of the carriage knits one row in stockinette pattern.  I can select needles by hand to get a totally different result.

The second photo is of the punch card machine, which selects individual needles to knit (no need to hand manipulate needles) and it also allows for tuck stitches, fair isle, and others that I haven't figured out yet.  It also has a ribber, which I haven't unpacked yet.

Anyway, that is what keeps me busy these days (when I am not napping).  It is fun, mostly, when everything goes well.  Although I am not too fond of the fiddly bits that finish the piece off, like weaving the loose ends in...

Today it is cold here, 32 F, and I saw the first snowflakes of the winter.  I hope that it got all of that stuff out of its system and the rest of the winter will be bracingly cool and without any snow whatsoever.  I can dream, can't I?

Bumper sticker of the day:  "I haven't lost my mind.  I have a backup somewhere."

Wednesday, November 05, 2014


I came across this photo on the Knitters Paradise forum, by cathy47, and just had to share it with you.

Does this towel make my chin look big?

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Why is "abbreviation" such a long word?"

Tuesday, November 04, 2014


The little blighters came calling the other night, panhandling for candy.  "Will go away for food."  We had around 50.  I sit outside the garage to do this rather than jumping up for each kid.  And of course, as I sit there with an entire bowl full of candy in my lap, I will need to sample them to make sure they are OK.  My favorite is Heath bars, and no one else in the family likes them.  Isn't that great?  More for me.  (I've already had a small sample.)

The majority of trick-or-treaters were under 5 years of age, and whispered "twik or tweet" and "tanku".  Some really cute costumes, Minnie Mouse  was the best.  We had candy left over, so the family was pleased.  It was held on the 30th because there was a big high school football game on the 31st.  Just as well, the 31st was raining and windy.

The horses are outside today, they made an absolute mess of their stalls over the last couple of days when they were in.  They are a lot of work, expecially now that # one son has to work Saturdays.  He's been told that things ease off as winter approaches and usually they will need no one on Saturday, I hope that is right.  I just can't do the work anymore, and DH shouldn't do it at his age either.  Something to think about for all you horse owners out there.

Only 7 more weekends until Christmas, can you believe it?  I will try as usual to get everything online, as the craziness of the hordes of shoppers give me a really strong case of bah humbugs.  Better to have the delivery guys do all the heavy lifting.
  Now if only inspiration would strike...

No snow as yet, although it has been forecast a couple of times and nothing happened.  The long range forecast is for a warmer that usual winter, which suits me fine.  We don't go out if the roads are bad, but I hate waiting for the kids to get home at night in the snow.  So many crazy drivers.

Not much to add from here. 
Bumper sticker for the day:  "Let's assume I'm right.  It'll save time."

Friday, October 24, 2014

Moving right along

Gosh that last post is grim.  I apologize, this blog is for small thoughts and not the weighty issues of the world.

I had the vet out to see Maybe, my "young" horse, who turned 21 this summer.  He doped her up somewhat and then removed a sarcoma from her ear.  Ewww!  Good thing DH was there, as her head sank lower and lower, and the vet was disinclined to kneel to reach the tumor.  So far the ear appears to be fine, she is not rubbing at it, and there is no bleeding.  We will need to use neosporin on it for a few days to control any infection, a job I am not looking forward to.  Isn't it amazing what pet ownership (and I count these horses as pets) entails?  And the cost!  Yesterday it came to $300; the cat to the small animal vet the day before came to $286.  My own doctor visits don't amount to that much!

I haven't been knitting as much these last couple of weeks. just in a slump for a while.  My problem is that each day I face the same question - knit or nap?  Ever since i retired I have enjoyed the freedom of taking a nap in the afternoon if I want to, and that seriously cuts into my time to knit.  Decisions decisions.  Maybe tomorrow.

I have been entertaining myself looking at the website "Awkward family photos"  It is a hoot.  Here is the link:  You can waste an amazing amount of time looking at these.

 Bumper sticker for the day:  "You haven't had enough coffee until you can thread a sewing machine while it's running."

Sunday, October 19, 2014

What's one way to waste a life?

I came upon a site listing "40 questions you're afraid to ask?"  This question about wasting a life is number 40, and is a question that I have asked myself.

My answer is, predictably, drugs.

And that includes marijuana.  When I lived in California, some 35 years ago, pot was everywhere even then.  You could smell it in the park, in theaters, in the grocery store, everywhere.  One of the people in the lab where I worked was a graduate student in endocrinology, a very very bright guy.  He smoked pot all the time, I think in place of eating(!), and he was a very unflappable, mellow, helpful student, but he couldn't finish anything.  He would, I don't know, lose enthusiasm?  Or maybe just lose track of where he needed to continue?  Despite being well spoken, smart, likable, he never finished his degree, and finally got a position as a salesman for (wait for it!) a drug company!  I think of him now and again and wonder if he married and had kids, and if so, what he told them about pot.  Did they smoke while driving, like he did?

But you have only to look to Hollywood to see the mess drugs make of talent.  Look at Whitney Houston for example.  All that power, beauty, money, gone for coke and heroin.  Or what about Elvis - fighting the battle against age that no one wins, taking prescription meds to get through a single day.  Or thousands more in Hollywood like these two, all stumbling over the same roadblock.  Do we ask too much of them, to be "on" constantly?  Do they fear failure so acutely?  Is it just part of society now, too easy to get and too easy to dismiss the risks?  Do they too support legalization?

See how one question begets a host of other questions...

I know there are other ways to waste a life, maybe drinking is the closest to drugs; in a way it is worse because social drinking is OK.   But laziness alone will waste a life just as easy as drugs or liquor, and so will fear of making the wrong decision, and so not making any decision at all.  Or leaving the decision up to someone else, spouse, parent, teacher, church, all of these and more.  A sad waste of a life.

On a more cheerful note, today's bumper sticker for the day:  "I'll grow my own food when I can find bacon seeds."

Tuesday, October 07, 2014


There I was, sitting on the edge of the bed, I stood up and BLAM! my back shot lightning bolts down my legs.  So completely bent over, 3 days of bed rest, and minimal stair climbing, and I seemed to be on the mend, when I tripped and fell on my back and backside in the middle of the night.  I had to crawl over to the bed to pull myself up.  Now my entire back is one massive bruise.  If it weren't for pain meds I'd still be in bed.  But at least I can now stand up straight.  My back was already a war zone, dating back to a riding accident when I was 24.  I never take walking for granted.

So working on the premise that one disaster cannot occur without two more, our refrigerator is a warm 60 degrees, and everything is crammed in the little fridge we use for soda, water, etc. while we wait for the repairman to call.  What event number three will be I don't know.  Yet.


OK the  fridge is repaired ($$$) but the repair will probably hold for only a short while.  So we will order another one, choosing the features we want.  Meanwhile there is all that food to return to the kitchen...

I wish ordering things online was like it is in the road runner cartoons.  Wiley coyote puts his order in the mailbox, taps his toes for a minute, and there is his order from Acme or wherever.  Instead it is 7 - 9 days, unless you spring for the $20 next day charge, which I don't.  All I have ordered today are some sleep shirts, mine have gotten all gray and tattered but no big rush.  I ordered these in the middle of the night, and ordered the same nightshirt twice by mistake.  The seller caught it immediately (different time zone or an insomniac like me) and offered to cancel the duplicate, much appreciated. 

I heard eBay has spun off PayPal into its own company.  I hope that doesn't mean any significant changes at the consumer level, I am a big fan of PayPal as the way to purchase online without spreading your credit card number everywhere.  I remember when I had to explain eBay to everyone, but even in the dark ages at the beginning of the site, I hardly ever had a bad experience.  The last major purchase I made was last month for $725 for a knitting machine with all the accoutrements, and I admit I was fairly apprehensive, not just because of the amount involved but because the seller had "zero" feedback.  But she went overboard with packaging and speed of shipping, so the two huge boxes came through unscathed from UPS.  Everything was there and more, and she answered my questions completely as I worked my way through it all.  Definitely 5 star.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "In my day we walked to school uphill both ways and had dial-up internet."

Friday, September 26, 2014


I live in a very small city, pop. about 25,000.  But when the university is in regular session the students add about 25,000 themselves.  This town was never designed to deal with the associated traffic, and especially not students who have their own drawbacks.  For one thing, in the winter the typically slick streets are a hazard because student winter tires are any tire with tread.  For another, all the parking anywhere near the campuses is designated for paid staff and faculty, with very little left for students.  The orientation for new students stresses that there are 2000 parking spaces on campus and 25,000 students, around half of which have a car.  The math isn't hard.  Leave the car at home.  So generally the traffic and parking ease off in the Thanksgiving holidays, when the students go home and leave the car behind when they return.


This summer, which is usually great for getting around by residents, was still a disaster.  There was construction accounting for part of it, paving, etc.  But basically it was just too many people overloading cramped two lane roads.  Probably by the next census the town will have closer to 40,000 permanent residents, many of them staff and faculty.  The city council passed a resolution that forbids heavy trucks in the downtown area (think big tri-axle coal trucks).  Somehow they think the trucks will just disappear, when in reality it means a work-around for the trucks will bring  worse conditions somewhere else.  It's not like the trucks will go 'poof'.

 And so it takes an hour to drive 1 mile at commute hours, which is 3:00 to 6:30 or so.  The three o'clock start is because of the health workers on shifts at all the hospitals and clinics.  The six thirty is accounted for by all the people waiting in traffic for the hour.  It is a mess, every day.  And don't forget the Saturdays when the university has home football games; that adds another 60,000 people to the regular weekend traffic.

Since we are retired, we just try to avoid the 'rush hour' (why do they call it that when no one can move, much less rush?  And it lasts for more than an hour?) .   And if one waits until the game starts, you can get around on game days.  But the side effect is more accidents here all the time now, too.

Anyway, that's my rant for the day.

I knitted a nice chenille scarf yesterday, photo below.  Unfortunately, the diamond pattern knitted into the scarf doesn't show on the 'right' side, only on the purl side.  But it is a nice scarf and easy to do, once I got the hang of it.  It is for two yarns together, which I haven't done before, and was done on my new 260 knitting machine.  I like it.  I'll knit a matching hat soon.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "You do not need a parachute to skydive.  You only need a parachute to skydive twice."

Friday, September 19, 2014

Ringing the bell

There is a small bell, like the kind that used to be put on cows, nothing fancy, sitting on my desk here tonight.  When I worked in the electron microscopy room, I hung it on the inside of the door so I would know when someone came in.  Where I worked would be in various locations (it was a 4 room suite, and one was a darkroom) I would get so involved in what I was doing that people would walk in the room when I had no idea there was anybody behind me.  Talk about jumping!  And of course, being in near-total (TOTALLY) darkness and hearing the darkroom door cycle (squeeeeek) tended to get my attention.  Anyway, that's the reason for using the bell.

But now it just sits on my desk, the nines knock it off once in a while, and it reminds me of bittersweet memories.  It was a good job, while it lasted.

DH and I went to a fund raising rally last night for Natalie Tennant, who is running for the U.S. Senate, in the slot left by Sen John Rockefeller who is retiring after 30 years.  She is an impassioned speaker, and has a smooth way of working the crowd.  Right now she is Sec. of State for WV, and would make an excellent senator. But I am doubtful about her chances, as the Repub. candidate is pouring so much money into the campaign.  We will see in November, I guess.  But what was fascinating at the rally was people-watching from the side lines.  Such an odd assortment of people, mildly inebriated, shouting like at a football game at each talking point.  Loud.  I actually stood for over an hour in dress shoes (I would have killed for a chair)  and DIDN't eat anything, even right by the table, yea Weight Watchers, because I ate a light dinner at home before we went.  If we had arrived sooner we might have managed a small table and a chair (!).  I'll see if I can walk later today.  Right now it feels a little iff-y.  Our attendance at this event was the idea of DH, who worked the crowd pretty well himself, even though he is retired now.  It was interesting to watch.  And I actually spoke to TWO people!

I have deliberately not watched the news from Scotland, will they be Scotland the brave, or the foolhardy?  And the idea of allowing 16 and 17 year-olds the vote is sure to make a BIG difference.  I am sure that at 16 I wouldn't have known the names of our senators, rock group yes, senators no.  For certain, this vote has both sides whipped into a frenzy, if the news coverage is anything to go by.  Our family was Welch, a long time ago.  No one will be likely to vote for a Welch candidate who has a name that the newspeople cannot pronounce. Padraig for Patrick isn't too bad, but Afagddu (ah VAG thee) or Blwchfadd (BLOOKH varth) do you see my point?

I am feuding with the pharmacists that now have my 'scripts after the last pharmacy closed.  I had a script filled there on Sunday, and when I got home I saw that one of them had only 6 pills in it, I was expecting 60.  The doctor has been going on about closely following how many I take (I tend to take fewer), and I thought it was an attempt to get me to call her, which I did, and she was puzzled.  After back and forth, it looks like the pharm. dispensed 6 instead of 60, and now they are in turmoil trying to figure out what went wrong with their system.  It's not without problems (insurance, etc.), and I am grateful it is not for any kind of narcotic.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Two rules for success in life.  1.  Don't tell everyone everything you know.  2.                       ."

Monday, September 15, 2014

Let the good times roll...

Ten things I (or we) did right:

1.  Marrying DH (44 years and counting).
2. Having children (really great ones).
3.  Moving from San Francisco to WV.
4.  Sending the kids to a catholic school (even though we aren't catholic).
5.  Having a yearly mammogram (that found my aggressive cancer quickly).
6.  Buying and keeping special horses (Poco was the best).
7.  Getting my medical technology license.
8.  Living close enough to get to know my aunts amd uncle.
9.  Seeking help when times were dark and seemed hopeless.
10. Encouraging and then helping my parents move here from FL.

There they are, mostly as they occurred, and in no special order.  I hope it doesn't seem like I am bragging,  It is just that I seem blessed with special people around me.  I've had problems, mostly about work near the end of my career, and really bleak times, but an extremely helpful therapist as well as a doctor helped me through those times (and now I feel mostly OK).

What are your good decisions?

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Calm you shall keep and Carry on you must."

Friday, September 12, 2014

Days Gone By

And here is the photo as of 9/19 (the porch is entirely repainted here; all those damn balusters - twice!)

We made the big mistake of painting the porch the same color as the wall behind it.  Now it is half and half until the rain stops and the porch dries.

I was thinking of the mistakes we have made over the years, some big and some not too big (like painting the wrong color).  Here is the list so far:

1.  We didn't buy the empty lot next door when we had the chance.  Now owned by the Paul Bunyan type (see a post a few days back) next door.
2,  Buying a dud pickup truck (why hasn't it been recalled for crappy brakes)?  8800 miles and three brake replacements!
3.  Getting the black kitten at the pound.  She spends her time beating up on the other cats and barfing.
4.  Choosing the wrong major in college,  one which would have given me upward mobility and not one which needed a PhD. to move upward.
5. Not taking my photography or my computer programming seriously.
6.  A regret about the kids.
7.  Not writing my grandmother when I was in college; she died suddenly while I was taking final exams my freshman year.
8.  Going to Bob Jones University, no place for a skeptic there.  They taught me how to lie.
9.  Buying a boat!  The two happiest moments, when you buy the boat, and when you sell it.
10.  Buying a small house (no room for a craft room) !

I think ten are enough, don't you?  'I'll do  "ten things I did right" another day..

Bumper sticker for the day:  "No matter how much you push the envelope, it'll still be stationery. "

Sunday, September 07, 2014

Cats and dangling string

I've been trying to get some progress made on  the baby blanket I am knitting.  I finished the first panel, and started the middle panel.  Six times.  I knitted up 47 rows before it struck me that I was supposed to connect the edge of the first panel to the second one as the second one is knitted.  So that got frogged.  One time I forgot the ravel cord, that is used to remove the waste yarn.  Frogged.  One time I realized that the ravel cord was the same color as the yarn (red), so it was invisible.  Out it came.  Forgot to cast on (did that twice), oh I hate to even recall all the errors (knot in yarn) that I have made.  It is currently at the point of beginning the second block of the second panel, and I am going to put in a lifeline just in case.... (frogged = ripped out, ribbit, ribbit, etc.)

All the dangling bits of yarn ends are an irresistible lure for the cats ~ as I concentrate on the current row they are trying to make off with the part hanging down by my knees.  I shall have to shut them out tomorrow when I work on  it.   I even must discard all the bits I cut off, as what the result is of cats ingesting said yarn is too awful to contemplate.

We finished covering the porch with the"restore" paint from Lowe's and it looks -- awful.  The color isn't even, it's the wrong color, the surface is very sharp and gritty (the paint has SAND in it) and it will all have to be done again with a regular latex paint.  I am so disappointed.  I thought it would grow on me, but it looks awful even when I am doing  something              like carrying in groceries.  Live and learn,  guess. 

N got one of the horse stalls cleaned/stripped before he gave out.  That isn't a job for a 70 year old, but since DS is working 6 days a week, it seems unfair to expect him to clean the barn on his only day off.  Of course, if he had is own place, he'd be using his day off to do laundry, get groceries, etc. so I strive to remember that when I ask him about the stalls.  The horses got into the paddock we were trying to keep off-limits for this year as we are trying to get the grass to grow back over the big bare parts.  The horses thought they were in heaven, the grass is 12 inches high, but the idea is to let it go to seed and get it even denser when it sprouts. 

For a look at a really beautiful horses, take a look at this short video, and be sure to listen to the music too.  Friesian Horses  are incredibly majestic.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Logic:   the art of being wrong with confidence."

Saturday, August 30, 2014


Is this smiley visible? YES!

And clearly I have too much time on my hands, to figure this out.  I like that they are big sized...

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Let's assume I'm right, It will save time.

My son showed me our house on Google street view yesterday, and WOW wasn't that a eye opener. Our horses were plain to see, and we could also see our neighbor getting into his truck.  I know it must have been a Tuesday, because the trash can is empty and at the curb, and the survey states it was done in Sept. 2013.  I wanted to post a photo here, but it includes my address, which I really don't need to share with the entire internet.

I am not a happy camper this morning.  Our next door neighbor recently cut down 3 trees (that were dead or near dead) along the property  line.  Today he cut down a live tree;  all the trees were on our property.  Husband and son went out to stop him, but too late.  We showed him the property markers,  you can sight along them and see that the trees are on our side.  Several of them are Colorado Blue Spruce, which if you know trees you know how very slow growing they are; we planted them 35 years ago.  He said they interfered with his mowing (??).  He said he would pay for them, but that won't bring the trees back, will it?  Jerk. I am not happy.

The clinic last night discussing knee replacement surgery has had one effect on me; I am not going to have mine replaced any time soon.  The cortisone shot has worked its usual magic and I can walk normally again.  It should be better for at least a month.  My main difficulty is stairs, and according to what I heard last night, that is problematical with the artificial knee as well.  So forget it.  If I start dragging my leg behind me I'll consider it again.  The doctor was very nice, he is a partner with my ortho, but I don't want to have my ortho do the surgery anyway, as he is in the midst of retiring soon.  Along with all my other doctors and therapist.

I am in too bad of a mood, so I will cheer myself up with some knitting.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Retired.  One owner.  High mileage.  Needs body work."

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

August is winding down

I have messed up my organizer; I finally figured out that August has 31 days---what a shock!!-- and thus appointments for this week are different from the ones next week.  I postponed my psych dr. appt to October, thinking it was a conflict, but really it wasn't (oh darn).  I left it in October; for some reason I have been getting one hour appointments with her.  I swear it is because she can't find anyone to talk to that isn't in worse shape than I am.  Which is hardly at all, now.  Still, husband is waiting outside for me, I feel like the meter is running.  If only I could get past my driving phobia.

We are facing the humongous task, painting the deck in back and the porch in front.  We will be using the Restore paint that is 10X thicker than regular paint, and is said to cover splinters, cracks, etc. in the wood.  I bet it is a bear to use, not to mention very pricey.  But still cheaper than replacing entire structures.  I will post before and after photos, I think.

The knitting carriage is off to be deep cleaned and adjusted, so the new (to me) knitting machine is at a standstill for now.  I did get some minor parts and have them to change up also, the machine should be in top condition once it is fixed up. Now I just need to decide what to knit first.  Probably something easy, like a hat or scarf.  I will wait to do a punch-card pattern, I think.  Meanwhile I am waiting for an email that the carriage arrived safe and sound in Georgia. Starting to get nervous.  It was insured, at least.

In October it will be 10 years since I started this blog.  My post counter says I have written 525+ posts so far.  I started it on a whim back in 2004 when there were oodles of posts to read.  Now there are far fewer out there, and I follow just a few.  Quality over quantity, I think.  It is hard to find topics to write, there are very personal ones that I don't want to share with the internet, and trivial ones that nobody wants to read, least of all me.  I should get back to posting photos with a post like this one, short on content.
  I resolve to do better in the second ten years ~)

Bumper sticker for the day:  "On a scale of 1 to 10, what is your favorite color of the alphabet?"

Sunday, August 17, 2014

"This message...

is  a natural product made from recycled electrons.  The slight variations in spelling and grammar enhance its beauty and in no way are to be considered flaws or defects."

The knitting machine arrived and is up and at least for a simple stockinette stitch, is knitting (once I lubricated it with a little gun oil).  It is bigger than I thought it would be, I really need a bigger room.

The Apple 5c phone arrived and is very entertaining.  But I will never do some things with it - like write emails.  I am usually within a ten yard radius at any time that includes at least one computer, that's out of a total of  five, not counting tablets.   The manual book has arrived and I am slowly going through it, with my phone in hand, and have learned quite a bit.

With the advent of the phones, we discovered an interesting factoid we didn't know:  Our LAN in the house will let us have only 5 hook-ups at a time, max.  After that, it says "no connection" which means something different, at least, I think it means that linksys was down.  Two of the 5 computers are hard-wired in, and are on if the PC is on.  Maybe there is a way to disable the link temporarily but I don't know how.  If I am browsing the net on the phone, and the kids are on their PCs, that's five.  No bandwidth for a second phone, a tablet, etc.  So I do my browsing while the kids are at work.

My, that took way longer to explain than it should have...

I had an appointment with a podiatrist on last Friday, but  ... I got cold feet and cancelled.  Too many doctors already.

 Bumper sticker for the day :  "I didn't trip, I was just conducting a random test of gravity."

Friday, August 08, 2014

A new knitting machine!

I have purchased a KH-260 knitting machine and it is on its way.  I have been looking for one for several months, and this one on ebay has all the add-on bits and pieces.  Can't wait, I'll post photos.  It is in two boxes, and the main one weighs 63 pounds...

My husband bought two apple 5C phones for us, we am waiting for them to come, too.  He originally went to Sears (they have a representative for Consumer Cellular there) but the guy there was majorly clueless and it was easier to do it all online although that means waiting.  I also ordered a book from Amazon called "the Missing Manual"  to use to figure out all the things it can do.  The book is nearly 600 pages long, it is good the cost isn't per page...

About toothbrushes:  When the internet was reached via MS-DOS and a .edu address, there was a site that featured a photo of a toothbrush, no text or anything but the photo.  In spite of this, there were thousands of hits.  Now, if you google images for a toothbrush, it gives you all the sites for Colgate, etc.  More useful but less amusing.  The reason all this came up for me is that my (Panasonic) toothbrush died the death a couple of days ago, and I had to get another, sticker shock.  Hope this one lasts as long as the other...

Bumper sticker for the day :  "Knitting keeps me from unraveling."

Monday, August 04, 2014

Summer is sliding away...

Here it is August already, what happened to the summer?  We haven't missed the pool, it has been such a mild summer here (West Virginia) that the water would have been a nippy 70 degrees.  And yet the southwest is burning up, between the weather and the fires.  We had a pile of old lumber and a bunch of tree limbs to get rid of, so we burned them, along with an old stump of a huge ash tree.  The fire burned for 4 days, smoldering in the stump, until everything was ash.  This with rain every day, hard rain.  It gave me an appreciation of how hard it is to declare a forest fire as "contained"  because they smolder and burn under what looks like cold ashes, for days.  

Thinking seriously about knee replacement surgery.  The cortisone shots only help so far, and then climbing/descending  stairs becomes a misery.  Oh for a one level house.  We have been in this one for 34 years, and I can't even imagine what moving would entail.  Just the attic alone gives me the blues, full of old junk, books, furniture, lots of stuff.  We would have to rent a dumpster first thing.  

My son got a smart phone this weekend, it is so entertaining.  I'd get one myself if I could think of anything I needed it for.  As it is, my dumb phone sits idle for weeks at a time, and is always needing to be charged when I finally turn it on.  It seems to me that batteries should hold their charge if the device is off, but this one has been like this since it was new.  It is a Motorola Razor, just the thing in its day.  It has a camera and no apps at all.  I don't think I could even receive texts or web pages.  And I have never figured how to get the photos on the phone off of it, to the Mac.  Again, not any need for that.  I carry a tiny tiny little camera which is ever so adaptable for all sorts of photos, and has a huge capacity with a flash card, and of course they can be switched out as needed.  It is a Nikon, no less.  It was a mother's day gift 2 years ago.

My attempts at machine knitting have hit a snag since my knee is paining me so much, it hurts to sit in a simple chair for more than an hour.  I messed up the project I was attempting and ripped the whole thing off to try again later.  Maybe I will try a different chair.  Meanwhile my resolve to not buy any more yarn has recently taken a hit, but only the once.  Or twice.  I love yarn, it does not need to be knitted for me to appreciate it.  The last batch had an alpaca blend in it, sheer luxury to handle.  I don't feel I am a good enough knitter to buy any of the hideously expensive yarns, or at least only to buy a single skein.

Back when the internet was mainly the place to find web camera sites that streamed continually over a broad band for speed, I had several that I visited regularly.  One of them was in Ft. Lauderdale (where my parents lived at that time), and it showed a big picture window with bird feeders outside, and house cats on a perch inside.  Not a very thrilling site, but it showed me how the weather was for my folks, and a sort of zen-like peacefulness to watch.  I don't think there are many private sites now, only those maintained by cities or big business.  I thought of all this because of my toothbrush, but this post is long enough now and I won't explain this connection until next time...

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Gardening is cheaper than therapy and you get tomatoes."


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Housemaids knee/know/

I have been coping pretty well over the last 3 or 4 weeks; this marks the second month since my last cortisone shot.  In another 4 weeks I will see Dr. Kurth, the ortho doctor who said I would know when it was time for an artificial knee, and I think we are there.  At minimum I will have information to read and ponder.  Either surgery, or I will need pain killers to get through the days.  I am also going to connect with the new psychotherapist and go for another session to see if I was a little rushed the first time around.  Ya think??

Meanwhile the last of the pool liner and all the non recyclable stuff is in the truck to go to the dump, with as much of the right stuff for this recycle number as possible.

As a post within a post, doing good is not to be found tonite.  I had topics, and photos, and good jokes, and over time, they have slowly slipped away and tonight I as going to (what happened to the blue font??!!) Now I have lost what tenuous grip I was trying to overcome great...

                                   Close your eyes,  breathe deeply in, then gently exhale.                                 
Good night.   

Friday, July 18, 2014

Today's news today, or later

Greetings to all here from the AZ area, and the brutal hot weather you are suffering through.  It is in the 60s here today and the 50s at night, and it is too bad we can't mix the weather together and have 75 for everyone.  And rain in CA instead of TX.  And what's with that gigantic crater in Russia?

My aunt that we visit down in the center part of the state got up in the night, lost her balance and pulled a dresser drawer down on herself, cutting her leg badly.  My uncle said there was blood everywhere, and the ER put 17 stitches in it.  As happens with age, she is uncertain what happened and how she got hurt.  My uncle sounds exhausted.  If they get a hospital bed the sides could be put up at night so she won't fall out...  she is on hospice so that is possible, I think.

We are tearing down our pool, leaving a big hole in the deck that will have to be fixed somehow.  We haven't used the pool much in the last several years, and the upkeep is both time and money consuming when no one is using it.  I loved to just look at it, especially in the evening when the lights shimmered inside the house, but that isn't enough to warrant keeping it.  I guess.

At least the horrible stink bugs we had in the late winter through springtime are all gone (here).  We had a series of warm days which brought them out, followed by below freezing nights which killed them off.  Of course there had to be a trade-off, and it seems to be spiders in the house.  I leave them alone outside (unless they are right beside the outside doors), but the ones inside have to go.  They are fast !! And killing them means you have to watch where they have run to hide, and then swoop down with paper towel and squish.  Ugh.  Still, better than clumsy flying stink bugs.

 Here is a photo of the Highlander that caused so much trouble for a simple dead battery.  I should say, that jumping the battery let it start, but the low charge bollixed up the electronics, hence all the flashing lights on the control panel.  All OK so far.

N finished clearing out the office for the volunteer group he works with, his part was mainly providing the pickup truck to haul 10 years worth of c**p to the recycling/dump station.  It was amazing how much stuff there was - they even had supplies in the bathtub! - , and the group has moved into a smaller office with a small closet for storage, so the culling was ruthless.  Some of it was donated to various groups and organizations.  There were a large number of unmarked stick pens and DD took them to work, they constantly run out and have to scrounge, the pens can't have any logos, etc. on them, so most freebies are unusable.  I'm trying to think of what I can do with the zillion pencils, it would have been nice if an electric pencil sharpener had turned up.  I think a lady I know volunteers in an elementary school, I'll see if they want them.  We ended up with two rather battered plastic tubs, clean inside and cleanable outside, that I will use to store yarn (!) in.  I must not buy any more yarn until some of this is used.  Must.  Not.  Buy.  The knitting machine eats up an amazing amount yarn, once a project is started, so what I have is not completely out of reason.  Or so I tell myself.


Bumper sticker for the day:  "The trouble with bucket seats is not everybody has the same size bucket."

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Grumble grumble

This has been a totally wasted day.  It started off OK, DH went to "help out" a group for which he is on the board.  What was supposed to be a one day project has turned into 4 and counting.  So anyway, he comes home exhausted, showers, eats, relaxes for a while.  We decided we would go out to dinner, something we do every Friday if possible.  We even have a guest card, so we head for the Toyota  Highlander, and it wouldn't start.  This is a brand new car, one month old, 1000 miles, cost a damned fortune, and it won't start?  DH tried everything he knew to do, but to no avail.  So we troop inside the house and call the dealer.  Who says, all the mechanics have gone for the weekend, but we could go ahead and get it in now so it would have first priority on Monday.  DH says,Umm, OK, but exactly how am I to bring it in when it won't start?  She replies, tow truck, and then stops.  DH waits and says since you (the dealer) are paying for this, don't you have a preferred company, and I assume you can call them, yes?  She allows that she can arrange this (big sigh, such a hardship for her.)  So the tow truck comes, hoists the car up into the bed of the truck and off they go.

While we were waiting for the tow truck to finish up, husband asks if we can borrow son's car to go to dinner as it is 6:15 by now and no dinner in sight.  He says sure, and DH asks him for the keys.  Here is where the story diverges,  Son said he already handed his keys over to Dad, and Dad says he only looked at them and did not take them then.  Four adults spend 3 HOURS searching for the keys, including going down to the dealer to search the Highlander.  No keys.

We found a comb, a folding knife, a sock, several hankies, you get the idea, in the living room recliner.  No keys.  At 9 PM I give up and went to bed, and eventually the rest of the family did too.

I'll wait till tomorrow to finish this.

Sorry for the wait, but we have all taken third and fourth looks in all the places we looked before, and we cannot find the damn keys.  Resolve to get new set made later this week, and son can drive using the second (spare) set.  I am so frustrated.

 Bumper sticker for the day:  "I'm not a pessimist; I'm an optimist with experience."

Update to the update:  The keys were at the dealer's the whole time; the tow truck driver dropped them thru the "early bird" box, and the dealer went nuts trying to find a Subaru in the Toyota lot that needed service.  All's well that ends well...


Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Something to think about (in place of bumper sticker for the day):

  "Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate and wine in one hand, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

This is where a post title would go if I could think of one.

I've been letting the old blog posting go by the wayside for a couple of weeks, which is because I can't think of anything to write.  So be forewarned, this post will be a little of this and a little of that.

We drove to the little town in Braxton county WV to see my aunt and uncle.  My aunt was feeling too bad to get out of bed, or even to talk to us; my uncle had a hard time tracking our conversation, probably due to fatigue.  We didn't stay long; DD got car sick on the way down, and so I rode in the back seat of the Toyota Highlander part of the drive down and then on the way home too.  It was my first time in the back, and there is a noticeable sway at highway speeds back there, although it didn't bother me.

This is the view of my back deck, you can see the pool (still closed) in the bottom left corner, and waaayy in the background on the right bottom corner you can see the white bathtub/horse waterer inside the fence.  It was a lovely day today, not too warm and a nice breeze.  We saw lots of squirrels, but no hummingbirds.  Yesterday the front lawn was the site of two Canadian geese with three goslings, on their way to the neighboring pond no doubt.  I scurried outside with the camera all poised, but they were gone by then.  I know lots of people regard them as a nuisance now, leaving huge amounts of droppings everywhere, like in parks and playgrounds, but they are still neat to see.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Back off !!  I have cats and I know how to use them."

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Tinker's Damn

Wonder where "Not worth a tinker's damn" came from.  I bet I can look it up on Wikipedia, but I am not motivated enough.  Actually, I'm not motivated enough to do anything at all.  I want very much to fall asleep, but three times when I have managed to drop off, I have jumped up and barfed.  For my next attempt I am going to keep a small plastic pan (you know, the ones you carry home from the hospital) beside my bed.  It only seems to happen when I lay down, so I feel fine as long as I sit up.  Hence the reason I am posting here at 3 am.

Yesterday DH and I scrubbed down the big bathroom adjoining the master bedroom, it was a mess when we started.  The linoleum floor is awful, faded and with gouges and cuts in it, I have no idea how they got there.  It looks like we have been ice skating in there, them changing into golf spike  shoes and practicing the Irish fling.  Yeah, it's that bad.  But except for that, it looks very nice, and even the floor is nice and glossy where it isn't damaged.  Now I feel like I've been rode hard and put up wet.  By tomorrow I will be needing vicodin to soothe the aches and pains.

That's the trouble with housework, you do it once and then have to do it all over again in six months.

The whole family had a nice dinner out; not quite what I had planned for a belated anniversary dinner, but it was OK, (except for my problem in the first paragraph).  We all went in the Highlander, the first time we've had all four seats filled.  I have to say it rides fine, but it feels like it is 8 feet wide, pretty much like the pickup.  Which I also do not drive.  I'll have to get N to drive to an empty  shopping center and let me get the feel of the thing.  To give you an idea, the dash displays a camera view out the back end.  That's because the back end is sooooo far away.  I have been working on my driving skills for some months, so this is a setback for me.  I don't understand why I am so tense when I drive.  Until I retired 7 years ago (at 55), I drove everywhere in my little Miata.  But gradually I drove it less and less, each time having to jump it (boo hiss) and so we sold it.  I have developed an enormous fear of driving, mine and anyone else's, to the point of being sickly and sweaty as just a front seat passenger.  I don't know why.  I should probably go back to the therapist, but someone would need to drive me there...

I am planning to get another knitting machine, a "bulky" one to use with 5 and 6 weight yarn.  The one that looks the best is owned by one of the members on the Knitters Paradise forum that I read every day, usually.  I say that, but after answering my request for information on the particular machine, I have heard....nothing.  So frustrating.

The photo above shows the burgundy swap I sent to my April/May partner.  It is hard to photograph a dark color, but the background is a burgundy apron, then a bunch of stuff here and in another photo of all that I sent.  The concept for this swap is interesting, but I withdrew because I am tired of searching for things that match that month's color.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "Dear Karma, I have a list of people that you have missed."

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Zoom Zoom

I am back from FL and glad to be home, where I can veg out if needed.  The plane ride was ...interesting.  Going to FL on a 737 was great because in a plane that seats 140 ish flyers, there were only 30 or so passengers.  I got all three seats in the row behind the bulkhead seats.  On the return flight, there were around 130 passengers, and there was someone in the window seat while I was in the aisle, but we had the center seat for our purses, etc.  I was the first person on the plane too.  I flew Business Select, which in NOT first class (Southwest has no first class seats, it is open seating, where you can take any seat that is, well, open).  The ride home was pretty bumpy at take off and landing, the two times when I get white-knuckle hands.  But all was well.  Husband and son met me at Pittsburgh and we drove an hour to get home.  This was the only non-stop flight from here to there.

The day I returned was our 44th wedding anniversary, but I was too tired to go out to dinner.  DH had a nice chicken dinner in the crock pot, so that worked out well.  The next day I was so sore on my right side from carrying a HEAVY tote bag thru miles of airport that I had to take one of my pain pills, I'll have to find a better way next time.  I had checked my suitcase, even though it would have fitted in the overhead compartment, because I didn't want to hoist it over my head to get it in (or out).  I bought t-shirts for the kids, which they said were great, but then they would have said that if they were too small or in weird colors, I will probably never see them wearing them.

The cats literally threw themselves at me when I walked in the door, demanding pets and scratches right then.  They still had had 3 adult slaves to see to their demands while I was gone, but apparently that wasn't enough.  Now, of course, they completely ignore me.

Bumper sticker for the day:  "I'll procrastinate tomorrow."